More than three years ago, this verse had such a different meaning for me. It meant that God’s plans would not harm me – they wouldn’t hurt and they were for a future and a hope. I coupled it with Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 (NIV) Believing that the past where I had chosen not to follow God would result in a glorious future, and as long as I walked with Him life would turn out just as “we” had planned.
I could not have been more wrong. As I planned for writing this post today, I heard Romans 8:28 ringing in my ears just as I quoted it. But, I realized that the coupling of Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28 does nothing for the hurting because at times they don’t ring true. At least that is what I found in my own experience in suffering and loss. Then I read the Message’s paraphrase of Romans 8:28 and I could declare, “That’s IT!”
That is what I feel like is happening in my life today: God is taking every painful, ugly and even glorious detail of my life in His love and working it into a masterpiece that reveals something that will benefit us and show off His amazing glory for all to see! It is His plan, He has had it from the beginning and He is working it out even in the writing of these words. He is showing how even pain, though it hurts for a little while, will not bring harm to my relationship with Him. He is showing how in spite of what hurts and how life deals us blows we can neither anticipate nor understand… We can still have hope in the One True God who gives and takes away, and blesses us in every season of our lives. Even if the blessing is only His peace and His love in a season of great pain. He alone is God, He alone is good and His glory makes this journey all worth while!